When baluns are used with open wire feed lines to wire antennas on HF, most commonly the main purpose is to suppress common mode current, to ensure that the current in one wire of the feed line is equal but opposite in direction to the other wire at that point.
I mentioned in my article WIA 4:1 current balun that the use of a single toroidal core in the above graphic compromises the balun. This article gives a simple, but more detailed explanation for the technically minded of why the shared magnetic circuit ruins the thing.
Under the heading “Wind your own balun “, the WIA’s “Your entry into amateur radio” 2nd ed (The Foundation licence manual) gives advice to newcomers on constructing a 4:1 Guanella balun, a current balun.
An antenna feed line is intended to convey energy from the transmitter to the antenna, and usually without giving rise to radiation itself.
The term “common mode” comes from consideration of the currents on an open two wire line, and it refers to the net or unbalance current, ie the current that would give rise to external fields, to radiation.
This article looks at the equivalent common mode current in a coaxial transmission line.
An extended test comparing signals received in Florida from three nearby stations in Australia was conducted 21/12/13, a low elevation path of more than 14,000km.
The A/B comparisons were performed on statistics gathered from the W4HBK grabber, in this case measurements of the noise and each of two transmissions of 1min of steady carrier every 5min over a half hour.
This article describes measurement of an Icom IC-7000 current consumption during SSB telephony transmission.
The capture is of an IC7000 running 100W PEP with compression off. I have read copy as loudly and consistently as I could with barely a breath, so it is an overestimate of current consumption. There was small ALC deflection, but not so much as to effectively provide compression. Compression will draw higher current, depending on the level of compression. Note too, that like many Icom radios, the IC7000 draws a relatively high current key down with no audio (4.5A here).